CAMP HILL, Pa. (June 21, 2023) – School is out for summer, but that doesn’t mean kids should take a break from their dental routine. Here are four tips from United Concordia Dental to help parents and caregivers ensure their children have a cavity-free summer:
- Monitor daily oral hygiene. To stay on track with good oral health during the summer, kids should brush their teeth twice a day with fluoride toothpaste and floss at least once daily. Depending on the child’s age, parents may need to supervise or help with their children’s dental hygiene habits until they master the tasks. Try a mobile app, like United Concordia’s Chomper Chums® – for children ages 4-11 – that makes learning brushing techniques, flossing and more oral wellness habits an entertaining game for the whole family.
- Encourage healthy snacks. With extra time spent at home during summer break, kids may snack more throughout the day. Since too many sugary foods can increase the risk of cavities, consider swapping out unhealthy foods for healthier versions. Keep the refrigerator stocked with fresh fruit and vegetables, cheese and yogurt, and replace soda and sweet juice with water and milk.
- Pack a dental kit for vacations, camps and sleepovers. Make sure children maintain good oral hygiene when they are away from home by putting together a travel dental kit with what they need to take care of their teeth. The kit should include essentials like a toothbrush with a travel case or cover, fluoride toothpaste and floss.
- Schedule a back-to-school dental checkup. With more flexible schedules and no worries about missing school, summer is an ideal time for kids to visit the dentist. During the checkup, the dentist or dental hygienist may perform a cleaning, check for cavities and other problems, take X-rays and apply a fluoride treatment. The American Academy of Pediatric Dentistry recommends that children see the dentist at least once every six months.
“It can be easy for dental routines to slide during the summer, but parents shouldn’t underestimate the importance of kids maintaining good oral health all year long,” said Anthony Warren, DDS, dental director, United Concordia Dental. “It doesn’t take long for plaque to build up on the teeth, which can contribute to cavities and other problems. And untreated cavities can cause pain and infections that may lead to issues with eating, speaking and learning.”
Knowing what causes cavities can help parents, and their kids, prevent them. View the accompanying infographic to learn more about factors that may increase the risk of tooth decay in children.
For more oral health tips, visit the Oral Health Resources section at UnitedConcordia.com.
United Concordia Dental